FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ’s)
What is the difference between Muzzy Online and the Muzzy DVDs?
The core of the MUZZY program is the MUZZY movies, Muzzy, in Gondoland and Muzzy Returns. The movies are included on DVDs and in the Online program. The online subscription includes additional language learning resources that reinforce the learning from the movies. These resources include over 400 online games, an online voice recording studio, printable worksheets, printable reader, and printable flashcards.
What is the best age for MUZZY?
MUZZY is used by all ages all around the world in homes and in classrooms. From toddlers to teens (and parents too!), MUZZY is a treasure trove of language resources for every age. Each of MUZZY’s videos is between 2 to 12 minutes so that bite-sized lessons organized by story part or theme are readily available for all and easy to fit into any schedule. Corresponding online games have convenient icons to identify the difficulty level so that the littlest learners can easy find their way to appropriate games and the most adventurous learners know where to dive in too.
How does MUZZY work for different ages and abilities?
All children start at the same spot; the beginning of the first movie, Muzzy in Gondoland. For older children and children with more language abilities, they will progress to the later parts of the story faster. Regardless of age or ability, all children will learn a second language the same way, by watching the Muzzy movies.
What if my child is already learning a second language?
MUZZY is a wonderful way to reinforce the language learning your child has already developed and then as your child quickly progresses through the videos, they will discover new stories that further develop their language skills.
What languages are available?
MUZZY is available online in Spanish (Latin America or Catalonian), French, English (British or American), German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese and Korean. MUZZY programs on DVD are available in Spanish, French, English, German, Italian and Mandarin Chinese. Spanish, French, Italian and Mandarin Chinese DVDs include English as a support language. English DVDs include Spanish as a support language.
Why is early language learning important?
As parents we all want what is best for our children, and languages open a whole world of opportunities for kids in their school years and beyond. Many experts agree that new friendships, expanded career opportunities and better test scores are just some of the advantages of bilingualism. Children are natural language learners, and there really is no better time to start. Through immersion, the same way we all learn our first language, children absorb new words and phrases without memorization – without work. And, because they are in their prime language learning years and are eager to show off new skills, they aren’t self-conscious about trying out new vocabulary. Plus, a native accent is still easy to achieve when you begin as a child.
What does it mean to learn language through immersion?
MUZZY’s immersion learning method is modeled on how children learn their first language. Language is learned in context simply by seeing, listening and being part of an immersive environment. Imagine a baby’s first words. They came without effort or memorization. Remember your child’s first use of the past tense? He or she had not studied verb conjugation. It just happened. Simply by listening, children begin to pick up words and try them out in daily conversation. With MUZZY, your child is surrounded with language and absorbs it in a similar way. New languages are fun with MUZZY!
How long does it take to learn the language?
Every child is different, and there is no one answer to this question. Success with language learning comes with lots of repetition and engagement with the language. Encourage your child to watch the MUZZY stories and additional video clips and to engage with the online games. If you have an allotted amount of screen time for your child, make MUZZY part of the routine.
Some children may speak words and phrases within a week. Others may take more time. Many parents tell us that their children don’t speak at all at the beginning, and then start speaking all of sudden – the words and phrases, even sentences just come gushing out. Have patience, and you’ll be rewarded!
Are there lessons to be used in sequence?
MUZZY is all about learning while having fun, and the best way to use MUZZY will be determined by your own child. The system’s powerful learning tools are very flexible and give every child his or her own initial points of access to the program.
The MUZZY story is the cornerstone of the program and will create your child’s bond with Muzzy and his friends. We encourage families to watch the story first and to let their children explore from there. Some children will be inspired to learn vocabulary or phrases related to a specific theme while others will wander through the program. Repetition is important and should be encouraged.
For children that wish to go through the program sequentially, there are convenient units online with story, lesson and vocabulary videos as well as corresponding games and exercises. In each unit, the child should begin with the story and move forward to the lessons and vocabulary. Each video clip should be watched and listened to several times. Many children will want to watch the whole story all at once. There is no harm in this, but then return to repeating each lesson.
Most importantly, be patient and have fun! Your child will grow with MUZZY, probably returning to it again and again over months and years. Your child will learn and discover more every time! Make MUZZY a family activity to encourage repetition.
What if I don’t speak the language I’d like my child to learn?
As a parent you don’t have to teach! Designed by the BBC to introduce a second language at home, MUZZY works with or without parent participation. Using all native speakers, MUZZY surrounds your child with language, and children pick up words and phrases effortlessly.
Of course, you can also learn right along with your child if you like. Just remember that as an adult, learning through immersion may be more challenging. While your initial reaction may be to feel confused by the new language or to try to translate everything as you hear and see it, your child is likely to simply take it all in and become absorbed by the story, the characters and the language. It is important not to impose our experience on our children. Children learn language naturally and use the same instinctive ability to learn a second language.
Hint: If you’d like to orient yourself with the story, you may wish to watch it in English once without your child so that you are familiar with the characters and storyline. Or, watch it once with subtitles. These tools are not necessary for children, and we discourage their regular use by kids. However, they are helpful for a quick way for parents to dive into the story.
Does MUZZY teach reading and writing?
MUZZY was designed to model the way that we learn our first language – with speaking and understanding coming first to facilitate communication. Learning to converse is the first and most important step. After all, it is years before we begin to read and write our first language, yet we acquire the skills to successfully navigate the world and communicate with our families and friends.
If your child is already reading and writing in his or her first language, the MUZZY games do begin to teach word recognition, spelling and writing. Games are marked with convenient symbols to differentiate whether the require reading and writing abilities as well as with a level of difficulty.
What will my child learn?
MUZZY is rich with language learning. Scene by scene, the MUZZY stories and vocabulary builders present hundreds of words and phrases. Your child will learn about greeting people, asking for things politely, counting, family and friends, expressing likes and dislikes, describing location, telling time, seasons, months, days of the week, pets and other animals, transportation, foods, shapes and colors, household items and much, much more.
Does MUZZY teach Latin American Spanish or Castilian Spanish?
MUZZY is available online in both Latin American and Castilian Spanish. DVDs sold by muzzybbc.com teach Latin American Spanish.
Does MUZZY teach British English or American English?
MUZZY is available online in both British English and American English. DVDs sold by muzzybbc.com teach American English.
I don’t understand what the characters are saying. Should we use subtitles or watch in English?
While your initial reaction may be to feel confused by the new language or to try to translate everything as you hear and see it, your children simply take it all in and become absorbed by the story, the characters, and the language. It is important not to impose our experience on our children. Children have an instinctive ability to learn language – whether it’s their first, second or even third!
If you’d like to orient yourself with the story, you may wish to watch it in English or with English subtitles to familiarize yourself with the characters and storyline. These tools are not necessary for children, and we discourage their regular use by kids. However, they are helpful for a quick way for parents to dive into the story!